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Book Club Blast participants share favorite reads

Participants in MinnPost’s third annual Book Club Blast share their book recommendations.

Book Recommendations from MinnPost's third annual Book Club Blast

Earlier this month, MinnPost held the third annual Book Club Blast, featuring keynote author Kate DiCamillo and breakout sessions with local authors and book club experts.

The breakout session “Share Your Favorite Book Club Reads” — led by Highland Park librarian and book-club facilitator Barb Pierce and me — generated dozens of recommendations from attendees. 

We’ve compiled the favorite titles shared at the Book Club Blast, beginning with those of the two workshop leaders:

Susan Albright’s picks:

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Gryphon” by Charles Baxter 

The Marriage Plot” by Jeffrey Eugenides 

State of Wonder” by Ann Patchett

Barb Pierce’s picks:

Before I Go to Sleep”  by S.J. Watson

Every Man Dies Alone” by Hans Fallada

Room” by Emma Donoghue

Attendees’ recommendations (in alphabetical order):

Beneath the Marble Sky” by John Shors 

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Birds in Fall” by Brad Kessler 

Bitter Grounds” by Sandra Benitez 

Dreamers of the Day” by Mary Doria Russell

Gilead” by Marilynne Robinson 

In the Garden of Beasts” by Erik Larson

Left Neglected” by Lisa Genova 

Loving Frank” by Nancy Horan

Moloka’i” by Alan Brennert

My Name Is Mary Sutter” by Robin Oliveira

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My Reading Life” by Pat Conroy

One Thousand White Women” by Jim Fergus

Sarah’s Key” by Tatiana de Rosnay

The Silence of the Loons: Thirteen Tales of Mystery by Minnesota’s Premier Crime Writers

Singing Solo: In Search of a Voice for Mom” by JacLynn Herron   

Still Alice” by Lisa Genova

The Cheese Monkeys” by Chip Kidd

The Devil in the White City” by Erik Larson 

The Faith Club” by Ranya Idliby, Suzanne Oliver and Priscilla Warner

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The Golden Hour” by Margaret Wurtele

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” by Rebecca Skloot

The Madonnas of Leningrad” by Debra Dean

The Sparrow” by Mary Doria Russell

Through These Veins” by Anne Marie Ruff

Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype”  by Clarissa Pinkola Estés

Below are additional recommendations from our Book Club Blast keynote author and interviewer:

Sarah T. Williams

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft” by Stephen King

Kate DiCamillo

Best American Nonrequired Reading,” edited by Dave Eggers

The Best American Essays,” edited by Edwidge Danticat

New Stories from the South,” edited by Amy Hempel

Selected Stories” by Alice Munro